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Being Charged with Criminal Transmission of HIVSexual assault cases, such as rape, hinge upon proving whether there was consent between both parties. Some consensual sex acts are also criminalized. Illinois law makes it illegal for someone to knowingly transmit HIV to an unaware person. The victim does not need to be infected in order for charges to be brought. Conviction on a criminal transmission of HIV charge is a class 2 felony, which can result in three to seven years in prison and fines of as much as $25,000. There have been situations where offenders with HIV have purposely or recklessly infected victims by having unprotected sex. However, spite can motivate some former lovers to make the criminal accusation.

Defining Criminal Acts

Since first adopting the criminal transmission of HIV law in 1989, Illinois has made several changes that narrow the scope of the offense. Not all sexual acts pose a reasonable risk of transmitting HIV. According to the law, there are three ways someone can criminally transmit HIV:

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Defending Against Sexual Assault ChargesSexual assault charges can be fragile for prosecutors because of the nature of the evidence. The prosecution must prove that:

  • The defendant committed the sex act; and
  • The accuser did not consent to the act.

If the accuser cannot provide reliable testimony or physical evidence of the sexual assault, there is little chance that the case will end in a conviction. However, a skilled defense against sexual assault charges will not rely on the prosecution failing to prove its case. If you have been charged with sexual assault, your defense can be proactive in explaining your side of the case and finding holes in the prosecution’s evidence.

Physical Evidence

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sex crime, campus police, Illinois Criminal Defense LawyerA new measure has been proposed in the Illinois House that would change the way in which sexual assaults are investigated on college campuses. The bill was drafted in response to a number of high-profile cases involving campus sex crimes that university police and administrators have been accused of mishandling.

In late March, Representative David Harris, R-ArlingtonHeights, introduced House Bill 3520, known as the Investigations of Sexual Assault in Higher Education Act. In drafting the bill, Rep. Harris hoped to address growing concerns that police departments on public university and community college campuses may be hamstrung in their efforts to effectively investigate sex crimes occurring in their jurisdiction. His proposal would make local law enforcement officials, such as municipal police departments and county sheriffs, responsible for the investigation of such crimes.

My concern was that campus police are not as equipped, trained, and prepared to handle allegations of sexual assaults as are trained law enforcement officers, he said. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, he indicated the dangerous possibility exists that a campus police department may be more interested in protecting the school from negative publicity than seeking justice for victims. I’m not saying this happens, Harris said, but there could be a bias on the part of campus police.

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